PEI

Joe Salerno no longer coach of Island Storm, team to continue: league commissioner

For the first time in the Island Storm's six-year history, the team is looking for a new coach.

'All options are on the table to keep basketball in Charlottetown,' says commissioner

Joe Salerno is the winningest coach in the National Basketball League's history. (CBC)

For the first time in the Island Storm's six-year history, the team is looking for a new coach. 

"Joe Salerno is no longer with the Storm," said David Magley, the National Basketball League of Canada's commissioner. "Both parties let me know they're looking for a new coach and looking for a new job."

Storm owner Duncan Shaw declined to comment Wednesday, and Salerno couldn't be reached. 

David Magley, commissioner of the National Basketball League of Canada, says the league is committed to ensuring the team continues to play in Charlottetown next season. (NBLCanada.com)

"From what I've gotten, there isn't just one reason," said Magley. "There's multiple things that factored in for everybody. But [Salerno] won't be unemployed for long ... He's our winningest coach in our league history, and he's run a great team."

"And you know what? There's a lot of people that would love to come to that Island and coach that Storm team," Magley added. "It's a good environment, great crowd. You're an important part of the city when you're with the Storm.  It's a pretty good gig to have."

League gives assurance Storm will continue

The commissioner said he met with Shaw and the league's president last week. Magley said the league is waiting for Shaw to say what will happen with the team next season.

"But I don't think the Storm's on the table ... The Storm's a near break even business, and he's worked really hard to get there. Most people would say 'we're absolutely in.' But that's not who Duncan is. He's not going to confirm something that's not 100 per cent," said Magley.

The commissioner said whatever Shaw decides to do with the Storm, the league is committed to ensuring the team continues to play in Charlottetown next season. 

Commissioner David Magley said he hopes to have more answers from Storm owner Duncan Shaw by July at the latest. (Island Storm/Twitter)

"In Moncton, the league's had to step in and financially fund [the team] for the last three years quite frankly ... You do what you have to do keep it going," said Magley.

"So all options are on the table to keep basketball in Charlottetown, in one of our best markets. We're very cognizant about how important Charlottetown is to the growth of this league."

Magley said he hopes to have more answers from Shaw by July at the latest. That's when the league will start scheduling its 2017-18 season. 

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